AuctionBytes Blog
Covering auctions, collectibles and marketplace selling.

AuctionBytes Blog The AuctionBytes Blog has been giving a voice to online merchants since its launch in 2005. Named one of the world's top 30 blogs in 2008 by "Blogging Heroes." Weigh in with your thoughts on the joys and pitfalls of selling online.
Thu July 30 2009 13:54:05

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

A recent eBay seller survey obtained by AuctionBytes indicates that eBay is considering rolling out an in-house shipping insurance plan offered to sellers. This follows news that eBay is introducing a policy that disallows sellers from charging buyers for insurance - they may, however, include the cost in the item price or in "handling" charges. (Note that eBay is not requiring sellers to obtain shipping insurance.)

The survey mentioned shipping insurance provider Allianz and described the service as follows:

eBay is exploring offering a shipping insurance service (called "Declared Value" by some carriers) to protect sellers against shipment loss or damage. This potential service will save eBay sellers time, money and provide an easy claims process.

The primary benefits of the service would include:
  • Significant cost savings compared to current shipping insurance services
  • The ability to acquire shipping insurance when printing postage in a single, easy step
  • Online claims lodging and processing
  • Ability to check claims online 24/7, with the latest information
  • 99% of claims are paid within 7 days
  • Available for major carriers, including USPS and UPS
  • Coverage for items up to $25,000 in value
  • Coverage for all items eligible for sale on eBay
  • Access to staff ready to assist you



As part of its announcement to sellers on Monday, eBay said it would remove optional buyer charges for shipping insurance. "The insurance option creates the perception that buyers need to purchase shipping insurance as a protection on eBay, an experience they're not accustomed to on other ecommerce sites. In fact, sellers have always been responsible for their items until they arrive safely in their customers' hands. That's why shipping insurance will no longer be included in the purchase flow as either an option or requirement for buyers. Of course you can choose to purchase insurance on shipments, but not ask buyers to buy insurance separately. In some categories like Antiques, Collectibles, and Jewelry, shipping insurance for sellers is essential. When appropriate, you can include the cost of insurance in your item or shipping price."

In reacting to the policy change, some sellers have said that buyers would have no incentive to cooperate with the seller in filing an insurance claim.




Comments (105) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Sleepless in Chicago

Thu Jul 30 14:13:53 2009

Including the insurance in the item price raises the listing and final value fee amounts.  Here is Donahoe's plan update on Fox News.  Please leave a comment at Fox News.  They will not listen to one but they may listen to many!  
Rebut this video!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O2mSHsCl7Rs

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: fruity

Thu Jul 30 14:15:02 2009

oh kinda like that inhouse insurance they made up for the trading assistant program? How's this ebay, you decide whether you're our employer or a venue and we decide not to file complaints with the Visa and Mastercard networks and your bank for paypal. Oh and if you're a good bunny we might not bring up all those holes in that flimsy FDIC letter you've been hiding behind.

Go put some flyers on some windshields and orange cones outside the doors. shoo

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: buck efay

Thu Jul 30 14:35:03 2009

What,they want me to pay them & trust an Ebay service to do the right thing? No thanks, I've had no problems buying my insurance from real carriers in business WAY longer than Ebay will be.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Ken

Thu Jul 30 14:39:32 2009

It looks VERY similar to Auctiva's rates. IF I had received the survey, I would have to say I would NOT use it.

Not only are the direct online rates cheaper from 3rd party insurance, but you can get blanket coverage that is significantly less than $1 per $100 of coverage.

Further more eBay would be making a NICE PROFIT on the insurance at those rates. If eBay REALLY had sellers in mind, they would offer insurance rates similar to or cheaper than inkfrog [55 cents domestic / 75 cents international]

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: no longer just ebay

Thu Jul 30 14:48:13 2009

So let me get this right.

First, eBay forbids =sellers= from offering insurance to =buyers= who want to purchase it.  (I'm not defending those sellers who play games with insurance, but I had a small number of buyers who wanted to buy insurance at their option, even for items as little as $5.00 and I did not mind providing them the additional service at cost)  And eBay tells =sellers= if =sellers= want insurance, to just add it to the cost of the item (which coincidentally increases eBay's take on FVFees).  And which would increase the cost to any buyer who purchases the items, whether they want insurance or not.

Then, eBay offers sellers an insurance plan, which eBay receives 100% of.

Why does that sound rather underhanded to me?

Oh wait, it's eBay!

And eBay continues to tell sellers (their customers) that they need to improve their obvious poor customer service.  Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

This type of corporate double-speak just helps me speed up my off-eBay efforts so that I can eventually reduce eBay to a small part of my business and use it simply as an advertising venue.

After more than a decade of selling on eBay with thousands of transactions (only =one= of which was never delivered in good shape by the USPS), with thousands of happy customers (only =one= negative feedback), I know eBay does not want me and has been raking me over the coals with high costs and less service.  Around the beginning of this year I started using alternative sites, and although the sales are small, the hassles for me as a seller is tiny by comparison and as I put more effort elsewhere, I am confident that those segments will continue to grow.  I don't feel that eBay offers my business the better option anymore.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: ebay=penny stock

Thu Jul 30 15:30:03 2009

Sounds like the same scam Paypal does with their Electronic delivery charge of .16 cents.

HEY DONNAHOLE::: THANKS BUT NO THANKS

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: pinetreeplace

Thu Jul 30 15:58:53 2009

As an antique business, I still want to know how on earth I am suppose to insert an insurance cost on any item when I am selling as an auction where the starting bid can and does differ greatly from the ending value? I can't guess, I would be short changing myself or overcharging my buyer!

I don't care how or where it's insured, I can not guesstimate this cost prior to an auction style listing!

I don't see the final value as being BETWEEN this or that dollar amount, it is absolute.  Insurance can only be calculated according to the actual value at the end!

So they don't want auction style listings any more?
Make it difficult for me so I just leave, quit?

Why don't they just tell me, no more auction style listings?

Are they a venue or not?

A fine line they are creating for themselves.

Once they are not a venue and I am supplying the inventory for their benefit, maybe I can charge them for all the time I sit here since my profit is all going to them in fees.

Maybe they should be paying me since I am becoming their employee!

I think we need a few lawyers to pick this BS apart.

Either they are a venue or they are our employer.

Which is it.

My business is no longer just that, my business, the moment I step into ebay and list.

The constant policy changes for the better of the community my ass!

I ran my business honestly and accurately, nothing hidden.  

Now ebay wants me to fold in costs and I'm not allowed to tell my customer that it's to cover insurance?

Looks like I'll be doing allot of Paypal refunding when I include the  insurance cost on every item for an unrealistic selling dollar amount, use what I need to cover the true amount, then refund the buyer the difference of what wasn't used.

I will say in every auction, refunds given with every purchase!

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: kitty

Thu Jul 30 16:10:17 2009

First eBay wants sellers to not gouge on insurance
then eBay wants the insurance costs rolled into the price

Then eBay wants to start an in-house insurance scheme...

Yes, scheme.  If sellers think eBay will listen to claims and pay out, the seller should have their head checked.

The only thing eBay has been really doing great lately is collecting money.

eBay keep rolling out your scams, defects, and schemes.

All it does is chase paying customers to my Amazon, Etsy, and website.

Death to eBay, which should be soon...How many times can a company shoot itself in the foot and still stand?

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Marilyn

Thu Jul 30 16:18:22 2009

Why would anyone go for a plan like that? I can get $100 domestic coverage on any mail class for .75 now, and $100 int'l for $1.50. There are cheaper better plans already out there.  Ebays proposed offering is ridiculously overpriced.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Gary

Thu Jul 30 16:23:02 2009

Hoe Must Go!

Selling on eBay has gotten to where it reminds me of visiting Las Vegas & New Orleans. On almost every corner is someone trying to fleece you.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Ebay h8er

Thu Jul 30 17:16:29 2009

I just had a buyer on a $140 item complain that my shipping is too high. I required insurance, and it was sent priority. Even with costs explained UPFRONT, no added fees for me, they still whine. I can only imagine they are leaving me a 1 for s&h, and it will only get worse once I can't lay out the ACTUAL fees for the ACTUAL services provided. Ebay is run by crooks. Free shipping is a fallacy, and the way Ebay has it set up is illegal in many states. You cannot offer a "free shipping" item at a higher cost then an item with no shipping included, but yet, that's what
Ebay sellers are supposed to do, break the law just to get page views. It should be called Shipping included, but I guess Greedy old Ebay can't be bothered to explain that to their  customers, wouldn't want to confuse the precious darlings.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Buck Efay

Thu Jul 30 17:21:37 2009

Gary, you're right, it's just like Vegas: Gamed Odds, 00 on Roulette wheel is best match, tacky lures & decor like Ebay's crummy page redesigns, free drinks & comps for high rollers like Buy & Shoplet, and scummy dirtbags trying to hand you ads for strip clubs or sell you counterfeit items on the corner, like Ebay's ads on your selling page. And when you leave, the same empty wallet, after they've cleaned out every orifice of your body & turned you out into the street. Buck Efay.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Phil in MN

Thu Jul 30 17:33:34 2009

I would not trust eBay for insuring any item, period! If the past is any indication, Ebay will screw it all up bigtime, and getting a claim paid through them would most likely be a nightmare!

Also, I want to make this point. Many sellers do not use shipping labels through Pay Pal/Ebay. I'm old school, I manually write all my customers addresses on the packages themselves & take the items to the post office. I do not need another form to fill out on eBay, which most likely I would have to do.
Sounds like this will be a profit center for ebay, they have enough of my money already! Even if I copuld save a quarter or a dime going through eBay, I wouldn't want to line their pockets more than I do now!
Why doesn't eBay focus on providing real value to their customers (sellers), and turn back the clock back a few years to make a more vibrant marketplace! They are suppose to be in the auction business, not the postal insurance business, they can't even handle that right!

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: RicRoe

Thu Jul 30 17:48:18 2009

Yeah...right....

Let me  be a good eBay seller....

I promise to roll shipping into my selling price in order to allow Donahoe & Co to a) lie to the Board of Directors about how sales are increasing and b) allow eBay to collect additional unearned fees.

I promise to roll insurance into the selling price in order to allow Donahoe & Co to a) lie again about how sales are increasing and b) allow eBay to collect even more unearned fees.

I promise to purchase insurance through eBay instead of my carrier in order to allow Donahoe & Co to a) lie some more about how they are increasing sales, and b) to allow eBay to earn a commission they negotiated with Allianz in addition to the fee they will collect on the sale.

I promise to do all this as soon as eBay restores the level playing field whereby sellers that pay to list on eBay do not see their listings buried in the easily manipulated Best Match Search.

I promise to do this starting immediately after Donahoe's DSR program is rescinded and buried for good.

I promise to do all this just as soon as Donahoe & Co reestablish two way feedback so that malicious buyers, and non paying bidders get what they have earned.

I promise to do all this right after Donahoe & Co lower fees charged to sellers on both eBay and PayPal.

I promise to do all that just as soon as I recover from the lobotomy I will need to help me believe Donahoe & Co value my business.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: EventHorizon1984

Thu Jul 30 18:26:12 2009

''eBay is exploring offering a shipping insurance service'' eBay

Sellers can avoid paying high insurance by shipping with companies that include a base level of insurance. Such as UPS, FedEx, etc.

Sellers that have some volume and/or deal with different or multiple shipping options should consider companies such as, Shipsurance (previously DSI) www.shipsurance.com or U-PIC www.u-pic.com, which have well priced monthly flat rate plans.

Sellers should post the other companies to this thread.

The advantage of either option, is they can be used on all your selling venues.

Sellers should shop around to get the best deal on shipping insurance.  Instead of waiting to deal with the future eBay Insurance Customer Service.

Disclosure:  We use some of the above, and we pay less than what eBay is foisting.

.
''Ah, arrogance and stupidity all in the same package. How efficient of you. ''
Londo Mollari, Babylon 5

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Deb

Thu Jul 30 19:18:19 2009

Phil in MN..ebay isn't suppose to be in the auction business, they are suppose to be a venue which provides people a place, a computer program to move their inventory, personal household stuff or what ever it may be, in any type of manner they wish, and we pay them a fee to do so. Auction, buy it now, fixed price etc...

It seems to me they are moving farther away from being just a venue they so claim to be. At one point they will cross that fine line and interfere in my business and others too much.  When does it become illegal for them to do what they do to me and my tax paying small business? They are splitting hairs and sooner or later there will be no more hairs to split.
Here's a good place to sell your antiques and collectibles.  Check it out.

www.antiqueauctions.mrbottles.com

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Leo

Thu Jul 30 19:31:16 2009

Now eBay is in the insurance business too..Yet another way of making money from the FVF..Gee ,does it ever end.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Patricia

Thu Jul 30 19:38:48 2009

Yep - another way to wring money out of the seller.  I know its voluntary but get their insurance, its cheaper and they obviously need to make the money ;-)  Soon Paypal postage will also be on Ebay - that's when they'll start charging for that service as well.  

All I can say is any of you with gold fillings in your teeth please keep your mouth shut around Ebay management!

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Daisy

Thu Jul 30 19:41:37 2009

Ebay is just shamelessly sleazy.

eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers   eBay Explores Shipping Insurance Plan for Sellers

by: Buck Efay

Thu Jul 30 20:50:49 2009

RicRoe, forgot one:
I promise to do all this the second Ebay requires users to register with a real address a real phone number & a real credit card.

I imagine an Ebay insurance claim would be settled by an adjustor, and don't forget, you win a USPS claim, they refund everything except the insurance fee, do ya think greedbay will refund your shipping or Ebaypal fees in a claim? To say nothing of Ebay's tired old how can you prove what you sent escape clause?

Click to view more comments
1 2 3 4 5 6  [Next Page]


Login is required to post comments.
To sign in to leave a comment using your AB Verify User Name, fill in the form below. If you have not yet signed up for AB Verify, or if you'd like more information, go to the Registration Page
.

Login for AB Verify
Be sure and use your email address and password to log in.

 
Email:
Password:
 
 Forgot Your Password?
 Even though you are signed in with the AuctionBytes Blog, you will have to sign in to the EcommerceBytes blog. But you can sign in with your existing AB Verify info.